London Covid: Trafalgar Square New Year’s Eve party cancelled as Omicron cases surge

Trafalgar Square’s annual New Year’s Eve party has been cancelled for the second year in a row as Omicron cases are surging across the capital.

Mayor Sadiq Khan has announced the event would be cancelled “in the interests of public safety”.

Covid related hospital admissions in the capital are up 34% week on week.

The number of cases on Monday was up by 9.4% on last week.

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London is currently one of the worst-hit areas in the country with case rates at around 800 per 100,000.

Mr Khan said: “With infections of Covid-19 at record levels across our city and the UK, I’m determined to work closely with partners in our city to do everything we possibly can to slow the spread of the new variant and ensure our NHS services are not overwhelmed this winter.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan urged Londoners to stay at home this New Year’s Eve

“This means that we will no longer be hosting a celebration event for 6,500 people on Trafalgar Square this New Year’s Eve. This will be very disappointing for many Londoners, but we must take the right steps to reduce the spread of the virus.”

He said that a “live broadcast spectacular celebrating our city and highlighting the most defining moments of 2021 will still be the centrepiece of London’s New Year’s Eve celebrations”.

He urged people to stay home and watch it live on BBC One and BBC iPlayer because it will not be visible from the ground or key locations in the capital.

The government has not announced any sweeping measures but has said they will “reserve the possibility” of bringing in new Covid rules in England.

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